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Cricket: Sam Curran breaks Indian Premier League record

England's T20 World Cup triumph in November saw them rubber stamp their status as the world's best overall white-ball side and the Indian Premier League franchises have clearly taken notice.

A total of seven England players were retained for Indian Premier League 2023, which starts in April, and another seven were bought in the first round of Friday's auction, including one record-breaking all-rounder.

What: Indian Premier League 2023
Where: Various grounds, India
When: Saturday 1st April 2023-Sunday 4th June 2023
How to watch: Sky Sports
Odds: Gujarat Titans 5/1, Mumbai Indians 6/1, Delhi Capitals 6/1, Rajasthan Royals 13/2, Royal Challengers Bangalore 13/2

Kings win the battle to sign World Cup hero Curran

England's T20 World Cup win was undoubtedly a team effort but Sam Curran was one of the real stars of the Three Lions' victory, claiming 13 wickets from six matches at 11.38 as he was named Player of the Tournament.

The 24-year-old was always expected to command a huge fee on his first IPL appearance since 2021 and that proved to be the case as six franchises went to war for the all-rounder, who was eventually sold to the Punjab Kings for an IPL record £1.85million.

Left-armer Curran, who started his IPL career in Punjab in 2019 before spending the 2020 and 2021 seasons at the Chennai Super Kings, broke the previous record set by South Africa's Chris Morris, who was acquired by Chennai in 2021 for a fee close to £1.6m.

"He'd play in any world XI, in any of the top teams, he's that good. He's probably one of the best all-rounders in the world, if not the best," said Punjab team director Ness Wadia.

Curran joins captain Shikhar Dhawan and his England teammates Jonny Bairstow and Liam Livingstone in Punjab and they are 8/1 To Win Outright IPL 2023.

Super Kings go big to land inspirational Stokes

The Super Kings failed in their bid to land Curran but Ben Stokes should prove a more than suitable alternative after the Chennai franchise went big to secure the services of England's Test captain for £1.6m.

Stokes, who scored a composed, unbeaten 52 to steer England home in November's final against Pakistan, has been England's driving force in all three formats in recent years but opted out of the 2022 auction after deciding to focus on his red-ball commitments.

The 31-year-old, who played for Rajasthan Royals from 2018 to 2021, was always going to command a significant fee after declaring for the 2023 auction and he'll head to Chennai, joining fellow England all-rounder Moeen Ali.

Despite the presence of the inspirational Stokes, the Super Kings are among the outsiders for IPL glory, available at 9/1 To Win Outright for what would be a record-equalling fifth time.

Rising star Brook heading for Hyderabad

While Stokes has long been an established star, Harry Brook has really made a name for himself in both the shortest format and the England Test team in 2022 and the Yorkshire batsman has been handsomely rewarded with a mega-money IPL deal.

Brook, who struck 468 runs, including three centuries in five innings in the recent Test series win over Pakistan - all at a mind-boggling strike rate of 93.41 - will make his IPL debut after Sunrisers Hyderabad picked him up for a £1.3m fee.

West Indies legend Brian Lara, who is the Sunrisers' head coach, was full of praise for Brook and believes the explosive batter will have no problems making his mark in cricket's leading franchise competitions.

"Yes, it's his first IPL but he has played in Asian conditions, he loves Asian conditions, and I believe he’s going to be one of the most valuable players in the future," said Lara, whose Sunrisers team remain outsiders for IPL 2023 at 12/1.

Unsold Root set to make overdue IPL debut

Outside of the seven-figure superstars, England will also be represented by all-rounder Will Jacks, who signed for Royal Challengers Bangalore for £375,000, who also snapped up his Surrey colleague Reece Topley for £200k.

RCB, who already have bowling all-rounder David Willey in their ranks, are 13/2 in a market which is headed by defending champions, the Gujarat Titans, at 5/1.

Leg-spinner Adil Rashid was also rewarded for his World Cup heroics, signing a £200k deal with Hyderabad, where he will link up with England teammate Brook.

Powerful opening batter Phil Salt also landed an IPL deal, signing with 6/1 shots Delhi Capitals, where he will bid for a starting spot in a stacked batting order which also features international stars David Warner, Rilee Rossouw and skipper Rishabh Pant.

And finally, for all his brilliance in the Test arena, Joe Root has never played an IPL match, but England's former red-ball skipper will get the chance to do so next year after signing a £100k contract with Rajasthan Royals.

Root initially went unsold in the first round but was later picked up by the Royals, who are 13/2 to taste IPL glory for the first time since winning the inaugural competition in 2008.

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